Career Corner
Graduate school as an option… to apply or not to apply
Chloe Lee, MA, Graduate Assistant

As I think back on my own experiences in applying to graduate school, I can recall the immense amount of questions that arose, as well as a lack of resources needed to answer these questions. Many students feel lost in not only the process of applying to graduate school, but also, in deciding if that is the best choice after graduation. Although there are a variety of benefits in pursuing further education, such as: greater job opportunities, financial incentives, and career mobility; it is not always a straight forward decision.

For the parent of a college student, helping your student with this decision can also be a confusing process. Some of the questions faced by both students and parents include:

  • Is graduate school a necessity for a chosen career path?
  • What additional time is required to complete a graduate degree?
  • What will my financial responsibility be like?
  • Is standardized testing required for admission?

These are just some of the questions facing prospective graduate students…

The good news is that at George Fox University Career Services, we have a variety of services available to assist you and your student, in answering these important questions. We offer a Graduate School Focus Week, during the Fall Semester, from October 12-16, when we will have information available on topics including: finding the right graduate school, admission tests, and writing essays.

Additionally, if you and your student decide that maybe graduate school is not the best route, or if you want to find more information to finalize your decision, career services also holds many other events and programs, including these in the fall:

  • The Internship and Volunteer Fair on September 23
  • Professional Preview Day on November 18
  • Pizza chats on internships and deciding on a major
  • Online career courses for one credit each semester; GEED 214, 216, 218
  • I-Connect meetings geared toward professional development and job search tools

Please refer to the link below for a complete list, as well as more information on the aforementioned events.

To close, I wanted to share a few tidbits that I learned from my experience of graduate school application, to share with you and your college student.

  1. Start early, even as freshman. Preparing for graduate school is a comprehensive process. Admission committees look at the student’s academic performance, and undergraduate extracurricular activities. Those applicants with a fuller application will stand out.
  2. Utilize the professors. College professors all attended graduate school, and can be a valuable resource, or even a mentor to a student bound for a degree in their field.
  3. Finally, if an application test is required, take a GRE, GMAT or a LSAT preparation course. These tests can be extremely challenging and the more you prepare, the less likely you will have to take the test more than once.